I had a very good day on Tuesday. To set the scene, in 1995 I spent a week in London with college. There were two highlights in that week - meeting Bella Freud was pretty amazing (I'm a huge fan), the other was an exhibition at the Design Museum - True Brit. True Brit was Paul Smith's first exhibition at the Design Museum and marked the 25th anniversary of the brand. I was completely blown away. Went on to spend 10 years trying to get hold of a book I'd seen that day, but couldn't afford to buy (You can find inspiration in everything - it's OK, I have it now) and became a proper fan of Paul Smith.
Fast forward to 2013 and you can only imagine how excited I was to hear that he was back - another exhibition at the Design Museum (which is now much easier for me to get to!) - My Name is Paul Smith.
I tried not to get too excited - I remember the last one so well that I can still walk through it in my mind (and I think I was only in there for about an hour, over 18 years ago....), but it was amazing. Not a massive exhibition, so manageable, and I was able to return to each room several times. I've included some images I took here, but I tried not to take too many as I felt that would spoil it (there were people photographing everything which was a shame).
The exhibition starts with a mock up of Paul's first ever shop (in the pink cube below), and leads us through his office with all of it's nick knacks and inspiration, and a mock up of the design studio.
There are clothes too, of course, as well as a selection of collaborations he's worked on and a behind the scenes film from a fashion show. I could've stayed in there all day but decided to head off when the school parties descended.
I think anyone with an interest in design will love this exhibition, not just fans of Paul Smith. It's very well put together and feels personal, which I'm sure was the intention. Now I'm just hoping that I don't have to wait another 18+ years for the next one!
My Name is Paul Smith is at The Design Museum in London and runs until 9 March.